THE FOO FIGHTERS, THE FORUM, LOS ANGELES, 10/13/2011
Nine years ago, I was obsessed with the Foo Fighters’ video for All My Life. I was living in Ohio in a nothing special apartment, working at an everyday car dealership, and the thought of ever escaping to California was no where near conception. When I watched the video, it awakened something inside me. There was such rawness, such passion, so much of it that I wanted for myself. The band was performing the song on the stage of a huge venue, and at the end, when the lights went up, the crowd was empty. There was nobody there. Yet they had played as if the world had been watching. I remember thinking back then, if only I could be in that audience. If only I was standing there jumping and cheering for them. What a waste that no one had seen it. I wanted them to know that I really saw it, and yearned to be transported into the vacant room.
I loved the song so much that I shared the CD with my best friend Jessica way back then. She couldn’t get enough, and the band quickly became her number one favorite. She surpassed me in her dedication, and throughout the years attended Foo Fighters shows and let her admiration for Dave Grohl be known to the world.
Fast forward to last week, and Jessica and I were on the floor of The Forum in L.A. at a Foo Fighters show, my first Foo Fighters show. There Dave Grohl was, stopped right in front of us on the runway, just a tiny bit out of reach. Jessica and I were right there, we had staked our claim in the front row of this stage appendage. No one was getting in our way. Dave Grohl was ours for the taking. The other faceless fans were of no matter. We were the only two people in the crowd. It was all happening just for us.
I had no clue how to hold it together. I wanted to claw at my own torso and dig in, slowly drag out my guts, then raise my bloody hands into the air with my intestinal peace offering to the rock god before me. I jumped up and down, and with my arms stretched towards him like a little 60’s Beatles freak I screamed, “I love you!!!!” He turned a bit, seemed like he was about to walk the other way, and then in a split moment of surreal cosmic magnetism, he stepped off the stage and walked right up to Jessica and me, like he was riding some invisible overpowering tsunami wave towards us. I had been thinking, please just touch our hands, just for a second, I just really wanted that for Jessica. She is his number one fan, she had flown out from Cleveland to see him, and she deserved it more than anybody. And then there he was, but not touching our hands, no, he was practically mounting our faces as he raged out on his guitar to My Hero. He then said, “Right back at ya”and banged his head forward as his sopping wet hair sprayed a shower of sweat all over our vibrating bodies. My mind couldn’t at all comprehend what he had meant, until a few seconds later I realized he must have been responding to me. I had just screamed out my love for him. I hadn’t even meant to do it, the words were just suddenly leaping off my vocal chords. Jessica and I had desired him so much that we had physically lured him into our arms.
Since my arms were already outstretched and his hands were occupied with delivering sonic perfection, all I could do was start feeling him up. I touched at his stomach, his side, my eyes wide, only a low, thin, flimsy metal gate separated us. Jessica was freaking out right along side me, spastically discovering the ripples in his sleek sticky body. I could see a few limbs reaching over our heads, sort of poking at him, and then my eyes went to his pectoral, and like a sick freak, I just start rubbing all over his pecs and chest, just exploring like a fumbling pervy horndog preteen. Yet somehow, even as sexually charged as it was, there was an innocence to it all. It was all more of a transfer of positive strong energy. He morphed into a rockstar Care Bear, and he was beaming his Care Bear heart, pumping life and hope and a fearless future into our racing, wanting human hearts.
It suddenly dawned on me that I could be arrested, that I shouldn’t just be having my way with Dave fucking Grohl as 15,000 fans looked on with shock, amazement and thick envy. But the bouncers did nothing. They didn’t flinch. And more importantly, Dave Grohl pumped his chest even bigger towards us as we openly molested him. He genuinely seemed just as lost in the moment as we were. And he didn’t miss a note. We ravaged him as he played hard for the packed house.
Then he kind of snapped out of it, seeming to realize that maybe he shouldn’t just be standing there as we publicly groped him like a violated passenger on a crowded subway. And off he went, back down the runway, to join his bandmates and finish out the song.
As he walked away, I felt all of my major organs fail at once. Every extremity was buzzing, and I didn’t know whether to start sobbing or vomiting. I felt the room’s eyes on us, and I almost wanted to duck so I could flip the fuck out in peace. But I just looked in Jessica’s equally glassy eyes and we rode out the endorphin high together. My sheer ecstasy had everything to do with Jessica. I had wanted a Dave Grohl encounter with her so badly that when it finally happened for the both of us, I just felt my heart do a series of methed-out backflips.
This would be the only time he stepped off the stage the entire night. It never happened again. He barely even touched anyone else’s hands.
I will never be able to convey the impact this experience made on Jessica and me. And in a way, I love it that way. It was a moment, a sudden electrical jolt, and Dave Grohl was the bathtub filled with sweat, and Jessica and I served as the turned on hair dryers leaping ourselves into his slippery genius. Maybe we all died in that moment. Maybe the electricity created a new universe in a far off galaxy. Maybe we are still there, frozen in the pure unexpected realization of a lustful secret dream.
Oh and that video I talked about earlier for All My Life? I wouldn’t realize it until the next morning when we pulled it up on youtube, but guess where they filmed it? Guess where that empty room was that I had so longed to be in all those years ago? The Forum in Los Angeles.
[Above, at 2:45 you can see our moment. Thank you random youtuber for posting this video.]